The most recent Netsch Lecture took place on March 16th, 2017. The topic was Lake Calumet: Chicago’s Little Known Lake. Do you ever wonder what’s back there in that vast industrial space that you’re driving past as you head south on I-94 toward Indiana? Well, one of the hidden gems in the area is Lake Calumet, the keystone lake that gave its name to the entire bi-state Calumet region and the last large unprotected open space parcel in the Calumet area. Join Friends of the Parks and our friends from the Lake Calumet Vision Committee to learn about the rich environmental and industrial history of this area and plans for its future. We’ll help you envision what’s behind the fence on this Illinois Port District-controlled area that we hope can help fulfill the dream for trails that connect this area to Lake Michigan and for an enormous urban nature preserve for the sake of wildlife, local residents, and eco-tourists while also promoting industrial redevelopment on Chicago’s southeast side.
All Netsch Lectures are free, open to the public, and run from 12:15pm to 1:00pm. So mark your calendars for this presentation in the Loop at the Chicago Cultural Center’s Cassidy Theater.
Prior to our Spring Netsch Lecture, our previous Lecture was on December 15th, 2016. The topic was “Healthful Recreation for the People: 100 Years of Clarendon Park,” with presenter Julia Bachrach, a Chicago Park District Historian. Julia Bachrach is the author of several books, including “The City in a Garden: A History of Chicago’s Parks”. During the early 20th century, reformers rallied for free showers and public bathing beaches to serve the needs of Chicago’s growing population. The City had recently undertaken a major engineering project to reverse the flow of the Chicago River and alleviate high levels of pollution in Lake Michigan. In 1913, the City began efforts on Clarendon Avenue to create Chicago’s largest and best-equipped bathing beach. Architect Charles Kallal designed an impressive brick bathing pavilion that served over 11,000 people at a time. More than 410,000 people patronized Clarendon Beach and its pavilion during its first season in 1916. Although the facility was extremely popular, after less than two decades, Lincoln Park expanded to the east of Clarendon and the facility no longer served as a bathing beach.